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To piggyback off of one of last week’s blogs, I wanted to comment on the Process Serving Standards Summit, an executive committee of process servers who work for collection agencies and attorneys, that convene this week to set some standards for self-regulation this week in Denver. As a preemptive measure, the committee hopes to create voluntary guidelines for process serving companies in an effort to avoid violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA").
Process serving companies could opt to use these proposed guidelines which, while not fail-proof, will potentially keep them, and their legal counterparts, out of hot water with the FTC. In response to an increasing amount of debt, consumer defending attorneys are cracking down on violations of the FDCPA, subjecting not only the process serving companies, but collection agencies and attorneys to harsh consequences if violated. Even though these companies are generally independent contractors, as agents working on behalf of the collector, all parties involved can be dinged.
The committee discussed streamlining the process, what practices could go beyond the limits of the FDCPA, and even how developing technology could aid in more accurate process serving (discussed last week). The committee listened to comments after the session held today, and will vote tomorrow, each major company present having one vote per proposed standard.